I’m one of those weird types that plans things in advance. Case in point, I had my summer reading program “gameday” games planned by Fall 2015. I came up with some game ideas and then had my Teen Advisory Group vote on the ones they wanted to play the next summer. I gave them a list of 10 and they voted on the top six. I know teen services librarians are always looking for new things to do with teens: I wanted to share what worked, what didn’t, and how far we got from the original plan.
Week 1 – We Didn’t Play Test This
We were extremely short staffed this summer, so not a lot of effort was put into advertising. That surfaced in the first week when we had four teens show up. Since they were the regular TAG teens, I let them pick what to play. They chose 5 Seconds and then Apples to Apples. They had fun.
Week 2 – One Night Ultimate Werewolf
We have played Werewolf a lot in the past just using a deck of cards to assign characters. We decided that we wanted to play “fancy” werewolf this summer. I bought the “board” game aspect which recommends downloading a free app to narrate the game. The board game allowed all eight teens who showed up the ability to play since the app was narrating and giving directions. It was a hit and all the teens loved it.
Week 3 – Quelf
The teens were looking forward to this game since they loved it each time we had played it in the past. I wasn’t present for much of this game due to other library issues, but there was plenty of video to get me caught up. At one point, a team of two had to decide if they wanted to lose three points or put on make-up as a penalty since they failed to complete the task on their card. They chose make-up and the photos and video were amazing. This was one of the most attended programs of the summer.
Week 4 – Don’t Get Me Started
This was a ranting game. The person on a player’s right gives the player a ridiculous topic and they have to rant for as long as they possibly can. Topics varied from Space (“why is it there?” to Pokemon Go (“designed by Michelle Obama to get people outside!”) to Glitter (“the herpes of the craft supplies!”). The sillier the topic, the more amazing the results. It was a lot of fun and there were a lot of laughs and tears.
Week 5 – Codenames
This was a game we had played before. Unfortunately, it was another small turnout week so the teens (again all TAG teens) decided to play BS. BS, for those of you who don’t know, is a bluffing card game. All the cards are dealt and each player takes a turn adding to the pile in numeric order (Ace to King). Not everyone is going have the exact card they need on their turn, so they have to bluff. If another player doesn’t believe them, they call BS or Bullshit. So this is a game to be played in a closed room in the event a “bullshit” slips out.
Week 6 – 5 Second Rule
This game is incredibly popular with the teens. They play it any chance they can get. Since it was the last program of the summer reading program, I made up the three things they had to name in 5 seconds (the topics in the box don’t always work well with teens). This also brings lots of laughs and tears of laughter. The game goes by fast, and when we ran out of my topics (my favorite was “Name three people in this room” and they almost failed) they decided to play BS. Again. These teens are nothing if not consistent!
Those were my game days for the summer reading program. Have you played any of these games with your teens? Which games are the most popular at your library?